How ya doing EZ? My wife and I started striper fishing about 3 years ago on Raystown Lake in PA. We're basicly in the same boat you are. We've been out with the local guides a few times and learned a little, caught a few stripers on our own but are still rookies. I've been working on learning to throw the cast net to catch my own shad for bait. Raystown Lake has gizzard shad and alwife which are both great striper bait. The problem I've found is that these baits are harder to keep alive then they are to catch. Over the summer we caught a few stipers trolling white bucktail jigs with 4" shad body trailers. Karen and I each caught 19+ pounders in August. Now that was fun. I'm new to this board but I'll be checking in on a regular basis now. I look forward to swapping stories and tips with everyone reading here.